2019 Newsletter 13-Signs of Spring are Popping Up Around Us!

2019 Newsletter 13-Signs of Spring are Popping Up Around Us!

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Carol and I have been part of the White Knuckle Miracle club a number of times over the years. What is that you ask? The saying comes from when someone is holding onto something extremely tight, due to a stressful or otherwise tense situation where one’s hands grip on so tightly that the knuckles appear white. The most common events for me have been while driving.
 The first I can remember would be back in 1971. My Mom had gifted the 1948 Dodge to me after my Dad passed away. It was a rear wheel drive with a manual 3-speed gearbox. I would drive home every weekend from Stevens Point College to be with my fiancé, Carol, in Sun Prairie. It was around this same time of year and I had gotten off work from UPS around 3PM. I eagerly headed home on old US-51. 
It started misting and after a bit, the wipers were having a hard time clearing the windshield. I decided to pull over and get a closer look. I slowed the car to a stop and opened the door, stepped out, and promptly fell flat on my back! I just shook my head and thought to myself, “Wow! It is slippery”. Needless to say, I drove the rest of the way home with white knuckles.
 Thankfully, time passed before my next white-knuckle event in February of 1985. Carol and I were headed East to a National Direct Farmers Market Conference in Northern New Jersey.
I preferred to drive straight through, if possible, to save on overnight stops. In fact, I planned on leaving Wisconsin around 5AM to arrive in New Jersey at 9PM, and head out for a garden center/greenhouse tour at 8AM the next day. We had made it all the way on I-80 to the mountainous area in Pennsylvania when the freezing rain and mist began. Not even the semi trucks could get up those hills! Everything came to a complete stop. We sat and sat for hours. So much for my schedule!
With my patience wearing thin, I noticed a way to cross the ditch and get into the lane going back down hill. I crossed the ditch and took the first exit. I rerouted through county and state highways to our destination. We got in around 4 am with a lot of white knuckles between the two of us. We grabbed a few hours of sleep and made it on time to the tour. 
Moral of both stories – Pay attention to changing conditions, and it is always best to leave early. Signing off until next week,  
Garden Center Spotlight
Floral Shop Spotlight
Saturday April 6
“Can bees fly in the rain?”
Not without their yellow jackets.
“Why did the farmer plant a seed in his pond?”
To grow a watermelon.
Rhubarb Custard Bars
Last spring, I tried the most unexpectedly delicious, gooey rhubarb bar and I was in love. The shortbread-like crust and rhubarb and custard layers are unlike anything I had tried before. I just had to have the recipe so I could make them for my family and friends.
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon rosewater
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 5 cups finely chopped fresh or frozen rhubarb, thawed and drained
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped
1) In a bowl, combine the flour and sugar; cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press into a greased 13×9-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes.
2) Meanwhile, for filling, combine sugar and flour in a bowl. Whisk in cream and eggs. Stir in the rhubarb and rosewater. Pour over crust. Bake at 350° until custard is set, 40-45 minutes. Cool.
3) For topping, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth; fold in whipped cream. Spread over top. Cover and chill. Cut into bars. Store in the refrigerator.


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